Ozzie Ausband

Salba - Protec


Steve Alba

BTO- Tell me about the differences between the Pipeline contests and the Protec contests?

Salba- The  difference between old Pipeline  and Combi  Protec  is just the actual skating platform itself. The two bowls are very different in many ways….But in reality both events are like the Super Bowl of skateboarding. In the day,  Pipeline was always the last contest in the series and if you did well at Pipeline that vibe lasted the whole year. Pipeline was the measuring stick for all skaters –Pro or Am. If you were an Am and you won,  you basically turned pro the next day. It is sort-of like Tampa Pro today. Plus, it took special skills to rip at Pipelines’ Combi. You did not just show up on contest day. You had to put in the time to get it wired or dialed like the Combi nowadays. Even now, you can not just show up and rip unless you are John Cardiel. The similarites are, that everybody and their mother wants to be involved in the Pipeline / Protec event. It is a massive platform in which you can show your stuff to the skate world. As for us older fucks who are still trying to recapture our youth it does not mean as much to us as the younger guns trying to get into the game. At the same time you still wanna do well ego or not. The ego says keep skating until ya drop much like the Wrestler movie that Mickey Rourke starred in. Us older guys do not want to give up our spot on the tour. You wanna do well and not look like a barney but at the same time you gotta just go out and have fun. You can’t take it too seriously or ya freak out.. I know I have in the past then ya get all pissed. The judges suck!   … blah blah blah!


My boys said I jocked out too hard in the years past, so last year I took it easier on the mental side.Trained real hard and just wanted to make the ten cut because it gets harder and harder every year with all the new Masters coming in at the age of 40. This year I have been hurt with a massive hipper and I am stoked just too skate and roll let alone enter a contest, which a month and a half ago was out of my reach. But I have been skating the past two to three weeks and getting a  little better every week so I wanna give it a go.  I have some humor this year about the whole thing. Just chill and have fun because that is  what is all about! This is a skaters high school reunion. You get to hang with guys who you only see once or twice  a year. Saw Tex Gibson yesterday! Ruling! Micke where are you? See ya Saturday

BTO- Do you see any changes that should be made in bowl contests & if so what?

Salba- I think a whole bunch of changes should be made. First, the Masters thing is getting out of control. Just because you turn forty does not make you a Master. In the golf world, you can only enter a Masters if you won a major tournament. At the same time, when all this Masters stuff started it was really geared towards my  / our generation. Hester Series and / or Gold Cup guys. The first Masters event was at Hermosa Beach and the people who showed up  were guys like Grosso, Lance, Christian, myself, Mike Smith, my brother Micke, Eddie El Gato, Big Ben, Henry G from Virginia Beach, Ngoho and Eric Nash. Even though some of these guys are younger than me,  basically we are still from the same era.

FS air

Someone like me has been doing contests since they were first invented. I won the first one. In dog years, they say a dog is seven years old for every year living. I think the same thing applies to skateboarders and in that case I have alot of skate / dog years invested so far in the skate world. So, thinking along those lines, I would like to see a pure Masters deal where the starting age is like forty-five. I like how they did the North Shore deal about four years ago where they let the skaters judge each other. Maybe they should make up teams like they just did at Pedros house in Brazil. Five teams of five guys each.  One master, one Pro, one new school gnar dog, one pool shredder etc. I hate when the judges don’t even skate or you don’t know who they are, or they are just the contest organizers bro.  I also don’t like when they do not let us jam… like a real pool session. I hate waiting my turn in order… that is so whack to me because when we all skate, we never take turns! We just go when we feel like it. What I propose is if they give us five runs each, then  let us go when we want in any order and the run will still count. I don’t want a heavy snake session but just feel like it should be done more like a backyard session. It flows more and skaters get energized more like that. It provides more energy for the crowd also. Something needs to be done. They need a new format or something. It is the same old shit every time, every year.- Salba

Thanks to Salba for taking the time with us and thank you to MRZ for the images. Skate- Ozzie